Corrupt Australian immigration employee fled India with $1.2m in the bank


A corrupt immigration official and her husband who were involved in a $3 million visa racket were allowed to flee the country with more than $1 million in the bank days after their home was raided by federal agents.

Reetika Ajjan, a former employee of the Australian Department of Immigration, is accused of supplying government information and equipment to an illegal racket run by her husband Jeetender, which resulted in more than 1,000 fraudulent visa applications, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

A police raid at the couple’s house in October 2011 turned up almost $500,000 in cash, which was enough to charge the couple.

But Mr and Ms Ajjan were able to flee the country because the Immigration Department failed to seize passports or ensure a criminal charge was laid quickly.

The couple were also able to wire $1.2 million to India in the days after the raid and before they fled to India.

 Secret briefings from the Immigration Department, obtained by the Sydney Morning Herald, reported that investigators thought Ms Ajjan should be charged for dealing ‘with proceeds of crime of a value exceeding $100,000′, which carries a penalty of up to 20 years in jail.

Ms Ajjan and her husband are now living in Delhi and Australian authorities are attempting to recover the $1.2 million she transferred to India, which is believed to be the proceeds of crime, but the Australian Federal Police has indicated the money may be difficult to recover.